On Sunday, 12 November, Warlingham Rugby Football Club’s Under-16s team were awarded the Surrey’s Youth Team of the Year trophy, for their achievement in the 2022/23 season.
Led by head coach Pete Millington, the Under-15s (as they were then) bagged the title across all age groups and clubs in the county. The season culminated in a final at The Stoop, home of Harlequins Rugby Club, with Warlingham beating Camberley. 300 supporters were there to watch the victorious side lift the cup under the floodlights.
Pete and his team have been coaching two sides for many years. The A team, as well as taking the Surrey title, is undefeated for two seasons, with the B team, which only plays A sides from other clubs, have won all but one game in the last couple of seasons. Both sides are unbeaten so far in 2023/24.
“We were all ecstatic on the night,” said Pete, of the evening the team were officially crowned as champions. “It was the culmination of nine years of playing together and massive amounts of talent and hard work from the lads.”
Dylan Murphy, who is part of the winning team, called their victory ‘unforgettable’:
“To win under the lights and with the buzz of the crowd behind us was amazing, paired with a quality performance from the team.”
Fellow player Cristiano Frade added:
“It was a great feeling to win the Surrey Cup… It felt like the only way to finish such a great season and that moment will live on forever.”
The team’s success in recent tournaments is put down to the players’ skill, as well as their rigorous training, with bi-weekly coaching sessions taking place every Sunday and Wednesday.